Houston making the most of her time at Minot State

By Calli Delsman
University Communications Student Assistant

MINOT, N.D. – Growing up is a time for kids to experience different activities and seek out their hobbies and talents.

For MacKenzy Houston, this was music.

Both her mother, graduating with a music major, and father, graduating with a music minor, sparked her love for music at a young age.

“In high school, I was a part of four different jazz choirs and had the honor of going to regional honor choir for two years in high school. Along with UND Honor Choir, Northwest Honor Choir, and North Dakota Honor Choir, I played percussion for seven years along with many other musical opportunities,” Houston said.

Not completely certain what she wanted to study, Houston still knew she wanted to attend Minot State because of her visit with her choir in the ninth grade and the overall environment Minot State brings.

“My senior year of high school, I was unsure of what I wanted to study. But after I received the role of Mother Abbess in ‘The Sound of Music’ for my high school’s production, my whole plan changed after realizing that I am capable of achieving a dream that sounded impossible,” Houston said.

Pursuing a major in music performance as a freshman, Houston enjoys all the opportunities and lessons she has learned, especially from DeVera Bowles, Minot State voice professor.

“I have known Dr. Bowles for seven years now. She was my judge in middle school all the way through high school for my music competitions. She has helped me grow my voice and teach me ways to be able to become a better singer,” Houston explains. “When it comes to professors, she is the one at Minot State who is helping me progress in music and is helping me learn more about my potential as a singer.”

Still obtaining a concentration in music, Houston is now working towards a major in psychology and a minor in criminal justice to be able to go into the forensic science field.

“Since high school, I have always been interested in criminal justice. My first experience of being in a courthouse was my junior year of high school where I was able to be an attorney on the prosecution side for a practice case that was given to us for our criminal law class,” Houston said. “Because of my love for criminal justice and people, I decided to put the two together and study forensic science.”

After graduation, she plans to attend graduate school to complete her Master’s in Forensic Psychology, where she will have multiple options in where she plans to take her career.

She also hopes to use her music concentration and love for singing in her daily life post-graduation. If the opportunity were to arise to sing, she would gladly accept. 

Along with her studies, Houston stays busy outside of classes by being a residence assistant (RA) in McCulloch Hall and working two more on-campus jobs. She will also start in Minot State’s new leadership program this semester.  

“As a peer mentor, I love my job and I love starting out class with an activity to keep people on their toes and being able to meet even more new people. As an orientation leader, I am so happy to be able to help out the incoming freshmen by being able to lessen their stress by helping them make the transition from high school to college,” Houston said.

“For the upcoming leadership program, I look forward to being part of a program that will strengthen my skills as a leader,” Houston explains.

Although Houston admits that between her studies, work, and other activities, life can get a bit stressful, she wouldn’t want to spend her time at Minot State any different.

“The people that I am able to see and meet keep me happy. I believe that being an RA and working two jobs on campus has helped me become more knowledgeable of the campus itself, being able to handle situations in a correct manner, and managing the time between my job and my friends,” Houston said.

About Minot State University
Minot State University is a public university dedicated to excellence in education, scholarship, and community engagement achieved through rigorous academic experiences, active learning environments, commitment to public service, and a vibrant campus life.

Published: 01/11/21   

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